Dr Sameh Hanna

Dr Sameh Hanna


After completing my undergraduate studies in English literature and linguistics and MA degree in Literary Theory at Ain Shams University (Egypt) in 2000, I moved to University of Manchester where I completed my PhD in Translation and Intercultural Studies with a dissertation on the Arabic translations of Shakespeare’s tragedies from a sociological perspective (2006). Immediately after I finished my PhD, I joined University College London (UCL) as an Andrew Mellon postdoctoral fellow in the humanities where I contributed to teaching translation studies and literary translation and pursued my research into the sociology of drama translation and the social history of literary translation in late nineteenth and early twentieth century Egypt. Before I joined Leeds University in 2013, I held a lectureship in Arabic and Translation Studies at the University of Salford from 2007.  

At Leeds I teach a wide range of subjects within the areas of Arabic literature/culture, Arab theatre and cinema and translation.



  • Co-director, Centre for World Literatures

Research interests

My research interests are in the areas of sociology of translation, Arabic literature and reception studies, with focus on the presence of such canonical works as Shakespeare's drama and the Bible in an Arab-Islamic context. My book on Shakespeare translation in Arabic (2016) explores the methodological implications of Bourdieu's sociology for understanding the socio-cultural dynamics of the Arabic versions of Shakespeare's tragedies.

I am currently working on a number of articles on the translation of sacred texts across cultural, linguistic and theological boundaries.

<h4>Research projects</h4> <p>Any research projects I'm currently working on will be listed below. Our list of all <a href="https://ahc.leeds.ac.uk/dir/research-projects">research projects</a> allows you to view and search the full list of projects in the faculty.</p>


  • Fellow of the Higher Education Academy
  • PhD in Translation Studies (University of Manchester)
  • MA in Literary Theory
  • BA in English Literature and Linguistics

Professional memberships

  • Founding member of the International Association of Translation and Intercultural Studies (IATIS)

Student education

I am the programme manager of Single Honours programmes in Arabic, Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies, teach Arabic drama, literature and translation at all levels and contribute to cross-school modules in World Literature, Intercultural Studies and PGR training.

Research groups and institutes

  • Centre for World Literatures
  • Arabic, Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies
  • Translation
  • Arabic
  • History
  • Literary studies
  • Cultures and Societies
<h4>Postgraduate research opportunities</h4> <p>We welcome enquiries from motivated and qualified applicants from all around the world who are interested in PhD study. Our <a href="https://phd.leeds.ac.uk">research opportunities</a> allow you to search for projects and scholarships.</p>